Review Summary: It's one of the best albums in Portuguese metal industry and one of the band's most powerful outputs.
With over 20 years of existence Ramp
is considered one of the top pioneers of thrash metal in Portugal. They started their carrer with a more "thrashy" style represented by a great first album. But thrash is not a commercial success here in Portugal, so they changed the direction of the band and introduced a "groovy" and industrial style of music.
was released in 2009 and represents the mix that I announced above. It's an album with great variety and is amazingly performed by the band members. They start the album with a real powerful, almost tribal (like Sepultura) song, "Blind Enchantment." It's a great song and works perfectly in live shows. The best song is "The Cold" putting on the table the best of Ramp
: it's a really fast, powerful, over-the-top thrash metal track. One of the good things about Visions
is not only the ability in combining groove thrash metal but also the melodic and "catchy" choruses. Ramp
always tried to perform with a great sense of melody in their albums but in my opinion they were off the chart on this one. Melodic but never pop, I mean they can bring to the table a great sense of melody and power while never being weird, accounting for the style they represent.
Since 1995 with Intersection
there is always a great ballad that is a commercial success on radio and TV stations in Portugal; ballads like "Alone" and "For a While" where they hit the peak of success with awards and commercial recognition all over Europe. This album is no exception. "Tragic Blows", in my opinion, is not better than the previous ballad songs but it's a great way to finish the album, giving ending mystery for the next record. Also taking into account "Mud" more thrash oriented song and "Follow You" one of the fastest and headbanging tracks in this album being head-to-head with "The Cold" as the top songs.
All in all, Visions
is considered by most of the fans of Ramp as a great album, maybe the best of the band with a more mature and oriented style representing the Portuguese metal industry along with others like Tarantula
. In my opinion alongside with Evolution, Devolution, Revolution
this is the best work released by this great Portuguese band, solidifying their presence in the metal industry all over the world.